Billy Kelly (b. 1931)
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Billy Kelly (b. 1931)


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Track 1: Described how three generations of his family were blacksmiths; his grandfather worked as a farrier for the British Army in the Curragh camp in Kildare. Track 2: Starting work with his father in the forge in Tullamore in 1945, and living in Parnell Street. Track 3: The nature of the work of a blacksmith. Recalled how he and his father joined the Irish National Foresters Benefit Society, with added comments from his friend and neighbour, Donney Geoghegan, who remembered the forge as a boy. Track 4: Demonstrated the blacksmith’s anvil used by himself, his father and his grandfather. Track 5: The traditional tools used in the forge and recalled the journeymen blacksmiths who came to work for his father in the forge. Track 6: Described a typical day in the forge. Track 7: Clear recollection of the day his father passed on the business to him. Track 8: His profession as a farrier, and travelling out to stables. Track 9: Memories of the occupational hazards of life in the forge, including the tendency of customers to smoke clay pipes and dispose of them on the forge floor! Track 10: The day he retired. Track 11: Memories of his dog, which he called his best friend, who was trained to collect the newspaper from the newsagent.

Additional information



Audio series:

Offaly Oral History Collection – In Conversation With …


160 kbps

Download time limit:

48 hours

File size(s):

4.67 MB; 3.93 MB; 5.65 MB; 9.73 MB; 6.02 MB; 6.91 MB; 13.38 MB; 5.77 MB; 23.90 MB; 3.17 MB

Number of files:


Product ID:



A blacksmithing family

Recorded by:

Maurice O'Keeffe – Irish Life and Lore